A bride and groom walk outside with three young children following them, serving as the cover of the book My Brilliant Friend.I’m currently reading My Brilliant Friend, book one of the Neapolitan Novels, by Elena Ferrante, translated from the Italian. This is a complex coming-of-age story, and of the lifelong deep friendship and just as deep rivalry between two women, Elena Greco and Lila Cerullo, whose relationship begins in a small village in post-war southern Italy. The richly developed female characters are contrasted with the often violent patriarchy of post-war Italy. It’s difficult at times to keep all the characters straight, as they are intertwined with each other, just as their lives are intertwined in their village. The novel is giving me a peek into a different type of life than I have experienced and is both entertaining and thought-provoking.

My Brilliant Friend has been made into a series on HBO (in Italian with English subtitles). I will watch the series after I finish the novel. —Glenna Warren, student enrollment and data integrity assistant, Admissions

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